Boy to return after pioneering surgery
PEOPLE in the Co Monaghan border town of Castleblayney are celebrating this weekend after a local boy who had a pioneering operation to rebuild his windpipe using his own stem cells was released from hospital in London.
Ciaran Finn-Lynch, 11, the grandson of legendary showband leader the late Maurice Lynch, was released from Great Ormond Street Hospital in London last Thursday after the world's first successful trachea transplant grown from his own stem cells.
Ciaran was born with long segment tracheal stenosis, which leaves sufferers with a very narrow windpipe. Doctors at Great Ormond Street Hospital took stem cells from his bone marrow and injected them into a donor windpipe, before implanting the organ and allowing the stem cells to transform themselves in his own body.
Ciaran's grandmother, Mai Lynch, and other members of the family were delighted with the good news.
A close family friend said yesterday: "This has been wonderful for the whole family -- they feel like they've won the Lotto."
And Ciaran, whose parents Colleen and Paul have returned from England to Belfast, has said he now wants to resume his plans to become a professional drummer.
The world first stem-cell trachea transplant with the use of stem cells was performed on Ciaran at the London hospital on March 15.
According to Professor Martin Birchall, of University College London, many more patients suffering from problems with other organs could now be able to benefit from the new procedure.